Of course, I tried to find an article about Huffington Post requiring real-names (that prompted this post). However, I couldn't find an article worth quoting on this issue.
YouTube Wants Users' Real Names Displayed On Comments, Uploads
It's definitely not for me. I do not, never will, need or want my ex husband to find me online and harass me like he did in the past. If my name eeks out just once, he will make contact with me, again. He has no reason not to, and it won't be for old-time's sake, or to even see the children that he is the sperm donor of. It's only been to harass me online. Not even in a 'bullying' sense but a 'hey - haha' or 'you shouldn't say that.' sense. He doesn't belong in my life and I reserve the right to keep him out.Reading comments on YouTube has always been an "at your own risk" sort of endeavor. Due to user anonymity, it's practically impossible to find a video not beset upon by angry conspiracy theorists and grammar-challenged, sexist, racist, or homophobic trolls. The site’s commenters are so bad they have inspired a mockingblog and even specialized filtering software.
But now the site has begun strongly encouraging commenters to use their real names when, say, dissecting the artistic merits of Carly Rae Jepson's delightful new collaboration with Owl City.
According to YouTube's blog, the policy change, first instituted on June 29, now allows users the option of using their Google+ profile, or their real name, in order to "give you more options for how your videos are seen and discovered on YouTube" while acknowledging that "using your full name isn’t for everyone."
I behave myself, and when I don't, the forum I misbehave on comes down on me (aka: I get the occasional thread-ban here on Debate Politics). This works for me, I don't need to tell everyone WHO I am, some things are not allowed - we have administrators who keep a handle on things pretty well.
It bothers me that You Tube / Google did this automatically in the past and I had to go into my account and conceal my real name. What this makes me regret is ever giving them my real name to begin with. When I first signed up for Youtube, it wasn't Google, it wasn't connected to my real-name account, and I rarely use it to comment/ etc. I listen to music, put together playlists, and share those with friends online. Nothing dramatic. However, I don't need people from my real life to FIND me.
That is my right - and if they start insisting I show my real name I will close my account.
Already, I have all of my accounts set up without my real name. I have a DBA pseudonym I use when absolutely necessary, but never my real name. . . which brings up another thought of mine: how do they know it's a 'real name' - when all you give is a first (could be fake) and last (could be fake) name. It really means nothing if someone thinks about it ahead of time.